May 28, 2016




Included as part of the PRECAUTIONS section.


Cardiovascular Events

Myocardial infarction, cerebrovascular spasm, and cerebrovascular occlusion have been reported to occur following the parenteral administration of phentolamine. These events usually occurred in association with marked hypotensive episodes producing shock-like states.

Tachycardia and cardiac arrhythmias may occur with the use of phentolamine or other alpha-adrenergic blocking agents. Although such effects are uncommon after administration of OraVerse, clinicians should be alert to the signs and symptoms of these events, particularly in patients with a prior history of cardiovascular disease.

Nonclinical Toxicology

Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility

Carcinogenicity studies with OraVerse have not been conducted.

Phentolamine was not mutagenic in the in-vitro bacterial reverse mutation (Ames) assay. In the in-vitro chromosomal aberration study in Chinese hamster ovary cells, numericphentolamine without metabolic activation and structural aberrations were slightly increased after a 4-hour exposure to phentolamine with metabolic activation only at the highest concentrations tested, but neither numerical nor structural aberrations were increased after a 20-hour exposure without metabolic activation. Phentolamine was not clastogenic in two in-vivo mouse micronucleus assays. At doses up to 150 mg/kg (143 times human therapeutic exposure levels at the Cmax), phentolamine mesylate was shown to have no adverse effects on male fertility in the rat.

Use In Specific Populations


Pregnancy Category C

There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. OraVerse should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Oral administration of phentolamine to pregnant rats and mice at doses at least 24 times the recommended dose (based on a 60 kg human) resulted in slightly decreased growth and slight skeletal immaturity of the fetuses. Immaturity was manifested by increased incidence of incomplete or unossified calcaneal and phalangeal nuclei of the hind limb and of incompletely ossified sternebrae. At oral phentolamine doses at least 60 times the recommended dose (based on a 60 kg human), a slightly lower rate of implantation was found in the rat. Phentolamine did not affect embryonic or fetal development in the rabbit at oral doses at least 20 times the recommended dose (based on a 60 kg human). No teratogenic or embryotoxic effects were observed in the rat, mouse, or rabbit studies.

Nursing Mothers

It is not known whether OraVerse is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk, caution should be exercised when OraVerse is administered to a nursing woman. The unknown risks of limited infant exposure to phentolamine through breast milk following a single maternal dose should be weighed against the known benefits of breastfeeding.

Pediatric Use

In clinical studies, pediatric patients between the ages of 3 and 17 years received OraVerse. The safety and effectiveness of OraVerse have been established in the age group 6-17 years. Effectiveness in pediatric patients below the age of 6 years has not been established. Use of OraVerse in patients between the ages of 6 and 17 years old is supported by evidence from adequate and well-controlled studies of OraVerse in adults, with additional adequate and well-controlled studies of OraVerse in pediatric patients ages 12-17 years old [Studies 1 (mandibular procedures) and 2 (maxillary procedures)] and ages 6-11 years old [Study 3 (mandibular and maxillary procedures)]. The safety, but not the efficacy, of OraVerse has been evaluated in pediatric patients under the age of 6 years old. Dosages in pediatric patients may need to be limited based on body weight. [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION]

Geriatric Use

Of the total number of patients in clinical studies of OraVerse, 55 were 65 and over, while 21 were 75 and over. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these patients and younger patients, and other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients, but greater sensitivity of some older individuals cannot be ruled out.

This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

Last reviewed on RxList: 9/20/2013


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